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A Picture Worth 1,000 Words: Top 12 Famous Photographers of All Time

A Picture Worth 1,000 Words: Top 12 Famous Photographers of

A Picture Worth 1,000 Words: Top 12 Famous Photographers of All Time

In the United States, there are currently about 50,000 professional photographers.

Out of all of these professional photographers, only a select few will be remembered and be famous enough to make it into the history books.

But what photographers have already made it into the history books? There are so many famous photographers, but here are a few that you definitely need to know about. 

1. Gregory Crewdson

Gregory Crewdson is one of the best photographers because he puts so much money into making his photographs. Consider some movies with a million-dollar budget.  Gregory Crewdson would use that same budget to create a single photograph. 

He would set up an entire, large-scale set just to take a photograph or two. With each photograph, they get more and more extravagant. 

One thing that makes Gregory Crewdson unique is that he uses everything available to him in order to get the style of photograph that he wants. Some of his pictures include broken fire hydrants, dilapidated buildings, and old towns. 

He specializes in using a large-format camera in order to get the look and type of photograph that he wants. 

If you get a chance, you need to check these photographs out in person. You can view them online, but they just don’t have the same depth and texture that they do in person. 

You could spend hours looking at these eery photographs and absorbing every detail that’s in the photograph.

2. Robert Frank

Robert Frank isn’t as modern as Gregory Crewdson, but his work is still notable. He was born in 1924, and when he was seventeen years old, he became a photographer for commercials. He worked in Zurich and Geneva.

Six years later, he became a photographer for fashion. While he was doing that, he used a camera that people weren’t using at the time, which was the 35mm Leica. 

Later on in his career, he diversified his portfolio even more and got into photojournalism and street photography. Once he started doing this, he really found his niche and made a name for himself. 

He started traveling around the United States and started photographing some of what would end up being the best pictures in his portfolio. 

His black and white photographs show the day-to-day lives of average Americans. He had a talent for capturing people’s real emotions, which his why so many people recognize his photographs.

Eventually, he compiled many of his famous photographs into a book called The Americans. To get content for his book, he drove across the entire American country in the 1950s. By doing this, he was able to get photographs of everyday Americans doing everyday things. 

Once he had done all of that, he was able to compile and publish his book. He had a famous writer at the time, Jack Kerouac, write an introduction for it, but once it was published, many critics hated it. 

As the years went on, the critics decided that maybe his work wasn’t all that bad. As the years went on, his photographs became something that would be considered classic art. 

3. Diane Arbus

Diane Arbus was also a photographer who took black and white photos in America. However, unlike Robert Frank, she specialized in photographing New Yorkers during the ’50s and ’60s. 

She loved photographing things that were outside of the norm. For example, she took photographs of people who performed in circuses, transgender people, disabled people, and even people with tattoos. Due to this, many people called her a “photographer of freaks.” 

However, that’s also what made her portraits stand out from all the rest of them.  In a time where people like that weren’t really accepted, Diane Arbus gave them a platform and a spotlight. 

Arbus was so influential that they actually made a biographical movie on her called Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus

4. Robert Capa

Robert Capa focused on photographing war, and he actually photographed five different wars. 

He wanted to be close to all of his subjects in order to get good photographs, so he was often in the midst of all the combat and action. 

This is what helped set him apart from other photographers because most other photographers only took them from a distance. 

These black and white photos get up close and personal with common soldiers. They are a living part of history. 

5. Vivian Maier

Vivian Maier is an interesting photographer, and she became famous after she died. 

Her photographs were discovered by John Maloof in 2007. In a trunk he had purchased, he found a bunch of her undeveloped film. Once he developed them, he found thousands of photos that Maier had taken. 

After her photographs were discovered, people started digging into her life and learning more about her. She was a nanny for most of her life, and she took most of her photos in New York and Chicago. She just captured anything that caught her attention.

Her camera of choice was a twin-lens 6×6 camera. She took it everywhere with her just in case she found something she wanted to photograph. 

She practiced a lot, and you can tell that that practice paid off. Even though her photographers were more modern, it looks like she took them in the ’30s or ’40s. 

She also took many photographs of some of the people on the street. Some of them are candid, like of little kids crying or people sleeping in their open convertible on the street. 

6. Richard Avedon

Richard Avedon was born in 1923, and he lived until 2004. 

His specialty was taking photos of fashion and people. As one of the earlier photographers, he helped to guide the style and fashion in America. 

When he first started his career as a photographer, he worked for Harper’s Bazaar. After he worked for them for a while, he then started his own photography studio when he was only twenty-six years old. While he was there, he took pictures that would later appear in Life and Vogue. 

He used a large-format 8×10 view camera, and slowly he started building his reputation as one of the most famous photographers. 

He was interested in portraits especially because he enjoyed capturing the personality of his subjects. He always tried to bring his photographs to life and make you feel like you really knew the person that you were looking at. 

7. Andy Warhol

You may have heard of Andy Warhol before. While he is known for his unique and famous paintings, he was actually into photography as well. 

He viewed photography as a way to capture the real things in life, and he saw it as a type of visual diary. When you look at his art and photography, you’ll find that a lot of it has a double meaning, so an art critic may wonder if keeping a visual diary was ever really his intention. 

The “Father of Pop Art” first started using a Brownie camera when he was only ten years old. He had grown up in Pittsburgh, so many of his first photographs were taken in his local neighborhood. 

Later, in the ’70s, he started using a Polaroid camera. Once he became skilled at using Polaroids, he was actually commissioned to start taking Polaroids of famous celebrities. 

Eventually, he was able to have his own studio, and he started taking these commissioned Polaroids against a plain white background. This style of Polaroids made the celebrity the focus. In addition to these famous Polaroids, he also took many famous black and white photographs. 

He kept taking photographs up until when he died in 1987. 

If you’re looking for Andy Warhol art, there are many places where you can find it. If you like it enough, some of it is even available to buy so you can hang this famous art in your own home. 

8. Henri Cartier-Bresson

Henri Cartier-Bresson was born in 1908 and then died in 2004. 

Unlike some of the other photographers on this list, he was a French photographer. He mastered the art of candid photography.  He took these candids on the street, capturing some of the most intimate and realistic moments. 

During a time where no one was really using 35mm film, he decided that he was going to become a master of it. 

Later on, when he had enough photographs, he made a book out of all of them. In this book, he made all of his subjects come to life and make you feel like you really knew them and saw them in real life.

9. Tim Walker

Tim Walker is also a fashion photographer, but he has said before he doesn’t really care about how important the brands are or not. This is what gives him a unique advantage. 

He has an active imagination, and this shows up in his creativity. Even though he’s a fashion photographer, he’s also photographed portraits for actors, directors, and designers. 

In some of his portraits, he incorporates florals and creates a surreal, fantasy picture. His colorful and vibrant photos are something that would fit a calming, interesting aesthetic. 

10. Ansel Adams

Instead of taking portraits or shooting fashion photography, Ansel Adams is a popular nature and landscape photographer. 

His photographs are so popular that you’ve probably seen them at some point; you just may not have realized whose photographs they were. His photographs appear in books, on posters, and even as screen savers. Some of his most popular photographs include black and white photos of Yosemite Valley in California. 

He was important for inventing a system to make sure they had a good exposure for black and white films. This process is called Fred Archer, and many photographers still use it today. 

11. Gary Winogrand

Gary Winogrand is another street photographer who was based in New York City. 

At the beginning of his career, he was a freelance photojournalist. In addition to that, he also took advertisement photos. 

Unlike other famous photographers, he would take a photograph without looking through the camera lens. Instead of trying to find a focal point through the lens of the camera, he would just guess where it was and hope it turned out.

Despite this odd technique, his photographs still came out perfectly, proving just how much natural talent he had. 

As he practiced, he got better and better at doing this, and his black and white photos became famous around the world. 

He also used a wide-angle lens, even when shooting portraits. This technique wasn’t commonly used, but somehow it still worked. 

12. Philippe Halsman

Lastly, Philippe Halsman is another photographer that you should know about. 

He was popular in the ’40s, and he photographed for the next thirty years until he passed away in 1979. If you’ve subscribed to LIFE magazine, you’ve probably seen his photographs. He has the record for the most covers for one photographer for the magazine. 

If you’ve heard of Salvador Dali, you may not be surprised to hear that these two were actually close friends. They collaborated on many creative projects as well. The popular Salvador Dali portrait you see with his mustache hairs pointing straight up was actually shot by Halsman.

Salvador Dali wasn’t the only famous person Halsman photographed though. There are also pictures of Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, and Marilyn Monroe. 

He was always good at getting his subjects to feel natural and comfortable when he was behind the camera. He had a great sense of humor, which you can see in most of his work. 

Discover More Famous Photographers

These are only a few of the famous photographers from history, but there are so many more out there. 

If you get a chance, try going to a photography or art museum to see some of these photographer’s photos in real life. Even though you can view them online, there’s something special about seeing them up close in person.

If you enjoyed this article, make sure that you also explore our website to find more just like this one!


Marketing for Photographers: How to Get Your Work Out There

Marketing for Photographers: How to Get Your Work Out There

Marketing for Photographers: How to Get Your Work Out There

Marketing for photographers can be as elusive as getting that million dollar shot.

As a photographer, you need to be able to get your work seen. You can have shows at galleries, live off of referrals, but you have to have a way for people to see your work online.

People are addicted to looking up information online for just about anything. They research products, answer a random question or look for services.

They’ll also scroll their social media accounts on their phone. All in all, people spend about 25% of their time online. 

You’re going to need to get yourself out there if you want your work to be seen. Read on for the top marketing tips for photographers.

Build the Foundation

When you’re creating a marketing plan, you’re going to need a place for all of that traffic to go to. That should be your website.

Your website is going to be a hub for all of your marketing activities. You’re going to need to make sure that it’s set up to show off your work. Here are the main things you need to pay attention to.


People are going to expect that a photographer’s website is clean and elegant. A fresh design can make an incredible impression.

You want to have a balance between colorful images and whitespace to draw the eye to those images.


Your site needs to have one thing and that’s speed. You’re going to be working really hard to get web traffic to your site. You want to be sure that keep it.

These days, people aren’t going to wait around for a website to load. Google puts that time about 2 seconds

SEO Ready Website

In order for people to find your site when they search for photographers online, you’re going to need to be on the first page of results. People rarely go past the first page. You’re going to have to optimize your site for search results.

Your website also needs to be ready for SEO. There are things that you can do onsite and offsite to improve SEO.

Offsite SEO would be tasks like filling out your directory listings on Google Business and Bing Places. You can also get backlinks, to your site to prove your site’s authority.

There’s a lot that you can do to improve your SEO onsite. These are all things that you can control, like your site’s speed.

First of all, you want to make sure that you know what keywords you want to target. This will be based on how people search for your photography.

For example, if someone is looking for a wedding photographer, they’re likely going to search for things like “how to find a wedding photographer.”

If they’re searching for a product, like custom blankets with photography, they’ll search for “custom photo blankets.” 

Next, you want to make sure that each page has the appropriate title tags and meta descriptions filled in. Each page should have its own designated keyword and variations of that keyword. These keywords can appear in the content of the page, the title, and the description.

If these things make your head spin, you might want to hand them off to a professional web designer. 

Get on Instagram

Social media is a great way to attract new visitors to your site and show off your photography at the same time.

If there’s one platform that’s built for photographers, it’s Instagram. You can connect with people all over the world and showcase your work.

The things you want to know about Instagram to be successful are to post consistently and use the right hashtags.

You really want to post about 5 times a week for maximum exposure. You also want to make sure your captions are well written and engaging.

One thing to keep in mind that there are thousands of people on Instagram trying to become a paid influencer. This is one area where a professional photographer can help them. You can reach out to these people and get jobs by taking photos of them.

Get Out and Network

Marketing for photographers doesn’t need to be complicated. It could be a simple as meeting people.

Going out and meeting people can be a massive boost to your photography business. Ideally, you want to get to know people who can refer business to you and vice versa.

If you specialize in wedding photography, get to know wedding planners in your area. You can also connect with the marketing managers at wedding venues.

Real estate photographers can connect with real estate agents or mortgage brokers. Real estate agents who are savvy understand the value of excellent photography. They know that if they want to sell homes faster and for a higher value, they need a photographer who can capture the elegance or coziness of the home.

Sports photographers can connect with newspaper and magazine editors. You can also connect to well-known blogs in your sport.

Think about the type of photography that you do, and who would be in need of those services. Then go out and get introductions to those people.

If you don’t know where to begin, start with your local chamber of commerce. Chambers are a valuable resource and know the business community inside and out.

Marketing for Photographers Can Build a Reputation

Your work is your art. It deserves to be seen and you deserve to get paid well for what you do. As wonderful as that may seem, that can’t happen if people can’t see your work.

Marketing for photographers is tricky because you have to be able to showcase your work where people are – that’s usually online. To do that, you need to be savvy on social media and study search engine optimization.

If you can do those things, and do them well on a consistent basis, you will get more people to see your work. That will only result in more jobs for you.

If you want to learn more about digital marketing, take a look at this article on the other search engines besides Google.